Are boys just as groped as girls

Children: Doctor games allowed?

Curiosity normal in kindergarten age

At around three years old, children are driven by curiosity. They are also interested in the bodies of their nearest and dearest. What do mom and dad look like when they're naked? Why does mom not have a penis? Between the ages of four and six, this curiosity extends to other children, and many explore each other. "Adults would perhaps see it as sexuality, but for children it is one of many role-playing games. They experience the world," says the teacher.

Don't jump in too quickly

If all children feel comfortable, are of the same age and are there voluntarily, the adults can let them do it. The expert advises not to intervene too quickly. "Otherwise the children will look for another opportunity and perhaps an environment in which adults have little opportunity to intervene if the game goes too far." Only: when is this point reached? Doctor games become problematic when there are major age differences or physical superiority of one or more children or when a child participates under pressure or forcibly.

Adults also find it very strange when children act out sexual intercourse. "This can be possible in the context of doctor games," says Schmitt. A child may have seen a love scene on television or caught something from an older sibling. Merely acting out is harmless, exercising is not. "This is where adults clearly have to intervene," said the expert. So pull the children apart, but without ranting. It is possible that a child has experienced sexual violence and is trying to deal with it. Should parents actually have such a suspicion, it is best for them to seek professional advice and classification instead of being guided by their own interpretations. For example, you can also contact the youth welfare office, an educational counseling center or pro familia anonymously.

Establish clear rules

As a rule, however, the child's doctor games are harmless. Nevertheless, rules are needed so that everyone feels comfortable. Adults should clarify this with the children beforehand. For example: Nobody is hurt, nothing is allowed to be put into body orifices and above all: "No means no" - everyone accepts if a child does not want to participate. This also applies if a child cannot express this verbally, but signals "I do not want this" through their posture. Just as important: getting help is not sneaking!

What parents should not do under any circumstances: forbid, devalue or scold the game without explanation. A natural thing suddenly has a bad taste for the children - without them knowing why. Therefore: hold back and take a look through the crack from time to time to see if everything is okay. By the way, the doctor's games are over by elementary school age at the latest. Childish curiosity then gives way to normal feelings of shame.